- I knew Hyacinth was going to fall in love with Lady Danbury’s grandson, so I thought I’d set it up by having Hyacinth read to Lady D once a week. Naturally, I wanted the book they were reading to be as ridiculous as possible, and voilà! Miss Butterworth and the Mad Baron (the book-within-a-book that would go on to appear in many of my novels) was born. Many years later, my sister Violet Charles and I turned it into a graphic novel.
- Eloisa James provided much needed help with Italian. Initially, she was just translating a few passages for me, but then I realized that what I really needed was to give her a passage in English, have her translate it into Italian and then back into English. Hyacinth isn’t idiomatically fluent in Italian, so when she translates, the sentence structure would end up somewhat awkward. And the double translation was the only way to get the full effect. For a more in-depth view of the translation process, visit Eloisa’s review of It’s in His Kiss on her website.
- Did you see Jane Hotchkiss, from How To Marry A Marquis? Once I realized that she was about the same age as Hyacinth, and that she was related to Gareth by marriage, I knew I had to find a spot for her.
- I had to research Little Bo Peep to make sure it was okay to mention the character in a book set in the 1820s. It turns out that the earliest mention (that I could find, at least) was in Shakespeare. Okay, okay, it was actually my dad who did the research. I was writing in Starbucks, back before they had free wifi, so I called him on my cell, and he did a web search for me. I told him I should put him on retainer, and he said, “Honey, I’ve been working for you since 1970.”
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